Spring events and festivals in the Seattle area start in March, when the cherry blossoms often bloom and sunny days increase in frequency. April and May generally pick up the pace, and by the end of May, just about every weekend brings a new event to the calendar. Some have been around for decades and others are new additions. From the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival to Northwest Folklife at Seattle Center, there is something for everyone so get ready to head out and enjoy the Seattle Spring!
The Moisture Festival is a comedy/varietè festival, meaning it's an assortment of entertainment with highly skilled performances and bizarre talents, all with a humorous twist. It’s presented as a variety show with routines ranging from 3 to 15 minutes. The Moisture Festival includes everything from live show bands, to aerialists and jugglers, to comedians, clowns and dancers, to acrobats and can-can girls. The acts vary from year to year, but you are sure to be entertained.
When: March 12 - April 5, 2020
Washington State loves its beer, especially locally brewed beer, and really any season is perfect to celebrate all things brewed. But in the Spring, take some time to celebrate Belgian-style beers. Seattle Center's Fisher Pavilion brings in dozens of Washington breweries to serve up more than 100 Belgian-style beers from tripels to saisons, wits to abbeys to lambics. All beers are brewed with Belgian yeast. This is a 21+ festival and dogs are not allowed unless they are registered service animals.
When: January 25, 2020
For decades, Mount Vernon, Washington, has celebrated the annual blooming of their colorful tulip and daffodil fields. The tulips are available for viewing every April (approximately...blooms can't exactly be scheduled) in Skagit County. Daffodils generally pop out first and then tulips follow. If you go on a weekend, especially if it's sunny and beautiful out, be prepared for crowds as the rural roads of Mount Vernon quickly become overwhelmed with cars and you will spend time in traffic. The reward is visiting any number of tulip farms where you can wander the fields, sit in the grass with a picnic, shop for tulip bulbs to take home with you, or check the events calendar and see what's going on. There are many farms large and small, but Tulip Town and RoozenGarde are the largest. Be sure to take your camera and wear your rain boots as the fields can be muddy.
When: Usually the entire month of April
The Daffodil Festival is a Pierce County festival that's been celebrating spring since 1934! This annual event in Pierce County is an umbrella event with a number of things under that umbrella, including a pageant to select the Daffodil Princess and Queen, but is most known for its parade that goes through not one, but four cities: Tacoma, Puyallup, Sumner, and Orting; all in one day (but not all in one, continuous parade). There's even a boat parade to wrap it all up!
When: April 4 (for the Daffodil Parade)
The Seattle Cherry Blossom & Japanese Cultural Festival celebrates Japanese culture and America’s relationship with Japan. The three-day event includes arts and crafts booths, traditional cuisine, exhibits and special performances that fill Seattle Center with festive fun. Enjoy the boom of taiko drums, discover ikebana flowers, taste delicious Japanese food or experience tea ceremony demonstrations. The event commemorates Japan’s gift of 1,000 blossoming cherry trees to Seattle in 1976 (which may or may not be blooming during the festival as blooms pop out on their own schedule). The trees were planted along Lake Washington Boulevard, in Seward Park and other places around the city.
When: April 24-26, 2020
Seattle Maritime Festival
The Seattle Maritime Festival takes place each May on the Seattle waterfront and celebrates Seattle's working waterfront. The Maritime Festival focuses on showcasing maritime careers with more than 30 interactive displays, vessel tours, kids activities and other free fun. Hands-on activities will include welding, a vessel simulator, diving, boat building for kids, emergency environmental response, boat tours and more. The festival takes place at the Seattle Maritime Academy located by the Ballard Bridge.
When: May 2020, dates TBA
The Seattle International Children's Festival is a performing arts festival for all ages at Seattle Center. The festival features performances in art, music and and folk dancing by children, and from cultures around the world. The event is free and open to all!
When: April 4-5, 2020
The University District StreetFair dates back to the late 1960s. It’s popular, attracting more than 50,000 people and nearly 400 craft and food booths. The StreetFair is an energetic and exciting celebration of arts and crafts, community, music, and food. It includes two music stages, a special children's area, a live theatre stage and a medley of street performers. The StreetFair is a free event.
When: May 16-17, 2020
Held over Memorial Day weekend since 1972, this is one of the largest folklife celebrations in North America...and it's free! It’s produced by Northwest Folklife and Seattle Center and hosts more than 7,000 participants, 27 stages and venues, roughly 1000 performances, and an audience of approximately 250,000. Each year has a unique theme, and in 2020 the theme is "Living Legacies." Immerse yourself in four days of music and dance performances, visual arts and folklore exhibits, workshops, craft and cooking demonstrations and films. There's a bit of everything here so it's literally perfect for all ages, all interests, and it's a lot of fun.
When: May 22-25, 2020
The Seattle International Film Festival (SIFF) is the largest film festival in the U.S. and is considered one of the most influential film festivals in the world. Attendance in the past has topped 160,000. Since the 1970s it has played 25 days straight screening over 400 feature and short films from over 60 different countries. Each year SIFF attracts directors, actors, and critics from around the globe, who participate in special events, post-film Q&A sessions, and provocative forums.
When: May 14-June 7, 2020
The Washington Brewers Festival fittingly falls on Father's Day weekend. Rain or shine it's hosted at Marymoor Park just outside of Seattle. There are over 500 beers on tap with live music to complement the atmosphere. The crowd is 21 and over on Friday. Then all ages are welcome Saturday and Sunday where you can enjoy food and games - there's even a root beer garden so the whole family can enjoy the fun of sampling beverages.
When: June 19-21, 2020